A MAN has been arrested after 32-year-old homeless man Michael Cash was left covered in red paint.

The 33-year-old was arrested on suspicion of assault and criminal damage after an incident near Tesco Express on the High Street in the Eston area of Middlesbrough on Sunday, September 9, which left Mr Cash covered in red paint.

Just days after the alleged attack, Michael Cash was found dead in  Eston Cemetery, on Wednesday, September 12.

Cleveland Police say they are not linking the alleged spray paint attack with the man's death.

A force spokeswoman said: “A post-mortem examination has been held and although the death is not being treated as suspicious police believe this man was the victim of a previous incident of assault which resulted in the man being sprayed with red paint.”

Detective Inspector Matt Hollingsworth said: "Police are aware of the speculation on social media regarding the cause of the man’s death but we are not linking the assault with his death."

Flowers and cards have been left by the wall in Normanby, Middlesbrough, where red paint could still be seen at the spot where the man who was in his 30s used to sit.

Cleveland Police say the man arrested in connection with the alleged spray paint attack has been released under investigation while enquiries continue.